The 3 People Hardest to Replace When you Move

Moving is fraught with challenges not the least of which is the loss of familiarity. Knowing your favorite coffee shop, the best place to snag a parking spot in a popular shopping center, how to avoid clogged traffic areas and on and on.

I’ve also discovered that there are (at least) 3 people in your life that are the hardest to replace. Let’s leave friends out of this equation because we all know they are irreplaceable.

Here’s what’s new in my world and who has been hardest to replace…so far.

An honest mechanic you trust!

My car started acting up last week. We had no idea where to go so my husband phoned our old mechanic to get his advice. After googling and checking Yelp, we narrowed it down to a guy who had ok reviews. We agreed my husband should take my car in because women are assumed to be clueless about cars. ( I am). He gave us the same suggestion our old mechanic did, but we have no faith in him yet because my husband thought that’s what the problem was too. This is still a work in progress.

A competent doctor you have faith in.

I’ve had melanoma. That diagnosis makes me neurotic about my sun protection and vigilant about getting skin checks by my dermatologist every 6 months. I was referred to a young woman had only graduated from her internship a few years ago. That makes her younger than my children! I was unsure but kept the appointment because it “was time”. Imagine my surprise to discover she is amazing! More thorough than any dermatologist I’ve ever seen, and I’ve seen a lot of them. She found a pre-cancerous spot on my forearm that I missed, which shocked me because I’m so neurotic careful. Now to find a good primary care doctor. This is still a work in progress.


A hairdresser who “gets” your hair and understands you.

hat shopping on a day trip to Placerville, CA

My hair is baby fine, poker straight and thin. It doesn’t like to do anything but lay like a skullcap on my head. I was referred to a nice gal and we have been working to get it right for several months. I’ve shown her copious pictures of past haircuts and even a video or two but we haven’t got the formula down yet. I’m having to spend way more too much time styling my hair than I ever did, not my goal. Luckily it’s hat season but I hope we can get this right soon. This is still a work in progress.

I’m still gathering my thought’s on living in an active retirement community. I am not a fan of the weather and we aren’t sure if we will stay here but I don’t relish replacing these people again!

Who do you think you would have trouble replacing?

Thanks for reading ladies and have a great day!


  1. I’m just curious after reading this post in Summer 2020– are you still in a retired community? If yes, what took time to feel at home there? If not, did you relocate to be closer to grandkids to a home, condo or renting ?

  2. I have several people I’d surely miss…my hairdresser and the eyelash lady…I love those lash extensions…I’m taking a break in quarantine…using Latisse…I see no difference in my lashes and it’s been several weeks…I really enjoy the lash extensions…they make me feel a little bit glamorous…I’m not…but they do make me feel that way!!!

  3. For me, it’s a hair colorist and a doctor. I’m still driving to the city for my medical care as it’s worth the hour and a half drive. They don’t even use the same machines where I live and the ultrasound machine looks like something from a museum! I think I’ve landed on a colorist: probably just in time for me to move lol Glad you are mostly settling in! XO

  4. A Hair Dresser/Stylist will be the hardest! I have never found the “right” one for my fine curly hair. I have found a wonderfully patient and all in for my seasonal changes which is also very hard to replace, but I always leave her chair a bit underwhelmed and saddened by what could have been.

    He-Man will probably think a great Handyman, and car mechanic. I leave all that up to him because I know nothing and would get ripped off blind!

    I’m so glad you found a good mechanic, and a Dr. that spotted your precancerous spot on your forearm!

    Things are lining up so we can move next year to our new house in NV. I hope we’re able to find good replacements for all the services we are currently using.

    1. I’m finding it pretty tough. That’s so exciting. Good luck!!

  5. A few years ago I needed to find a new hair stylist as mine was going to have a baby and was not going to return. I went to several people that did not meet my needs. I did find one persin that I went to for awhile but decided the prices were too far outside my budget. One day I was at the beauty supply store getting my shampoo and decided to ask them. They don’t give direct referrals but did share some names and salons. I visited them in person which was eye opening. I ended up going to the place where I had a good customer experience. That was over a year ago and it was a great decision.

    1. Thanks for sharing Shannon, that’s a great idea. Now to find the beauty supply store here! I’d forgotten about that. I had a great one I went to!

  6. My husband learned a long time ago that if I am not happy with my hair he is not happy.

  7. Barbara Crowley says:

    I was a divorced single mother for quite a few years, so even though I have remarried, I am in the habit of being a “pinch-penny”so I do my own hair, nails and get most of my clothes on sale. However, some of my friends do this, too and they even find wonderful resale items. If I do say so, they look fabulous! I do get my hair cut at Great Clips. I’ve always enjoyed putting outfits together and looking “chic”.

    1. That’s awesome Barbara. I have cut my own hair but the results haven’t been pretty.

  8. Sandy Andry says:

    Without a doubt, it would be replacing our church. If we moved, it would be so difficult to find a church like mine!

  9. I was an Army brat, then an Army nurse for 20 years, then followed my active duty husband around till he retired 9 years ago. We moved to the Big Island of Hawaii in 2009 but decided that we were on the wrong side of the island for us. So two years ago we moved again but this time we had a very specific list of wants and needs, including being near a church, sunny weather, a view of the ocean, a pool and shopping close by, 1 story house, etc. We are still driving an hour each way to see our same doctors and veterinarian but I am very happy with the hairdresser I found on my first try. It has been our best move ever and we don’t plan to leave.

    1. Way to go Marcy! It sounds like you’ve got it just right…and in Hawaii too. Amazing

  10. We have moved several times over the years, including an expatriate assignment in Europe. I got so desperate that I actually “coached” my husband through cutting my hair until I found a hairdresser that spoke fluent English (and we’re still married! lol) A good hairdresser is worth her weight in gold!!

  11. Hairdresser and vet, for sure.

  12. Cathy J Eissler says:

    I would add to that list: a neighbor you get to know well enough to trust with watching your house, your dog, or just to chat occasionally. We moved about 45 minutes from our old community when we moved in 2000. I still go to our old doctors and don’t mind driving to them, since our grandson, friends and stores I am familiar with are there in the area. I typically just make a day of it when I have an appt. I have lunch with a friend, or go shopping or go to the mechanic we know and trust. Today I stopped to drop off some hair “pomade” my grandson wanted and I found for him, following my oncologist appointment (routine 6 mo visit). My hairdresser (over 30 years) is over that way too. I have been through him getting married, having their 3 children and now children are grown, starting their own families and such, have become friends with his wife as well. I would say I don’t like change, but I do when it is better. Our little community doesn’t attract the best doctors, the best hairdressers and such. We are just a little west of Orlando, so most go there for these things. At least I do!

    1. That’s the best of all worlds, Cathy! I would have to drive further to see mine but I have done it once or twice. Change for the better is always my fav;)

  13. We have been lucky with doctors – luckily we landed with the best we’ve ever had! Cars we take to the dealer for checkups when due so that’s not a worry. But, ah, the hairdresser. Took me 2 years. I was constantly stopping strangers ‘love your hair, where do you go’. I have been to countless that didn’t work out and paid anywhere from $60 to $100 for JUST a haircut as I insist mine be cut dry as it shrinks so much when wet cut and dried. Then on a recommendation of a lady I volunteer with, I hit the jackpot. He is great! Can you even believe he is at a Great Clips and my haircuts are $13.99. ????. And I just got a coupon in the mail for $9.99. Needless to say I tip him well. You just never know where you’ll find the perfect one. Shame on me. I’d have never gone in a Great Clips on my mission to find the perfect hair dresser.

  14. For Monica, the death of a husband is a terrible shock as I well know. May I suggest that you put off moving for a year or so. When you are grieving, as you are, it is hard to make rational decisions. After a year you will be in a better position to know where you want to move if indeed that is what you want to do. Of course it will depend on your situation and finances but waiting is wise.

  15. I have moved many times and find that getting to know the neighbors is a good way to find essential people such as yardmen, hair stylists, mechanics etc. It is a question of trial and error and can be exhausting. Once you find one they can still move on so the process is ongoing.

  16. I have a great cleaner. We love her as a daughter and would find it hard to replace her. She’s like a Whirling Dervish.
    A good hairdresser can be really hard. Lots of trial & error. I hard a great hairdresser here but he moved to . Vancouver. He trusted him explicitly – different cuts and highlights/lowlights. I have since been to five salons and tried seven other hairstylist. I really miss Anthony!
    I’ve always had good luck in finding new doctor and dentist.
    When we first moved here our car that had been in storage for three years needed some work. My husband took it to two different garages that repaired it (not!) before landing on that was a recommendation from a friend. Eureka!
    Good luck with your car. And, I would recommend you find a different stylist that knows how to work with fine hair. It can be a case of trial & error.

    1. I haven’t found a cleaning person so we are doing it ourselves. No fun. I am asking more people and plan to drive further to get a more sophisticated stylist.

  17. My husband and I were planning on moving to a retirement community but he passed away three months ago. I don’t know if I can do it by myself.

    1. I’m sorry to hear that but YES you can and it might be the best place for you Monica. I know several widows who’ve moved to active retirement communities and it’s been the best thing for them. They’ve made new friends, are busy with activities and feel safe. Think about it again, please. Visit some. Ask around. Keep me posted please

  18. Judy Myers says:

    Oops…having a senior moment … her name is Tray (not Linda)

  19. Judy Myers says:

    I can recommend Linda at Mane Attraction in Rocklin. Tell her Judy recommended her. She is wonderful an listens…

  20. Debbie Davis says:

    Best way I found to find a new hairdresser was to look at women who I admired in passing – their overall look and a great haircut and then take simply asked them who their hairdresser was. I booked a blow out appointment with someone else in the salon ( or book a nail appointment) and watched the “chosen” hairdresser in action. Took me a couple of times but I’ve been with this colorist and haircutter for 15 years!! Good luck!

    1. That’s a great idea but I’m not sure watching would help here. The salon is pretty disappointing looking and the haircuts coming out of it are uninspiring. Time to look further.

  21. Cathy Ausin says:

    YES!! Agree with all of those. I would add finding a good, honest and authentic church is so tough too!
    It does take a lot of energy to start over with investing in new people. Names and details about them are harder to remember these days. We make a habit of inviting new people over to our house and sharing a meal, one or two couples/singles at a time…..that seems to give us good opportunity to embrace our new community.

    Keep at it!

    1. You’re right! I’m bad at remembering names to begin with but the older I get the worse I get at it.

  22. Yes, moving to a retirement community is a challenge, and asking other newly retired neighbors around you for recommendations doesn’t always work, they are in the same trial and error predicament! So, five hairdressers later , and hopefully they don’t move or retire, that gets checked off. The list, four doctors, three dermatologist, two eye doctors, two dentists, two car mechanics, two alterations places, two pet doctors, many nail salons, and on and on..all in 10 years. Why? they start up in a new community, then relocate. What helped ?, getting out of the retirement community, and asking locals!

    1. Wow! You’ve been through it all Eileen. I need to ask people outside this place too. Any ideas?

  23. 1. Hairstylist (I have hair like yours)
    2. Doctor
    3. Dentist

    1. I forgot all about the dentist because I’m not due for a cleaning yet!!

  24. Yes….for me Hairdresser is TOP on the list. If your hair doesn’t look good then you don’t feel good.

    Second…..would be to find a church you like.

    Third…..a doctor who you relate to, get along with and who is good…all in one! Hard to find!

    Have an awesome day!

    1. Thanks for sharing Holly! Another vote for the hairdresser. If they only knew they’d raise their prices.

  25. The hairdresser is a big one. Hope she gets it right or you find another soon! And the mechanic is big.

    On the doctor front, my gastro guy retired and I had to find a new one, as I was due for a colonoscopy. I found a lovely young woman who turned out to look about 15 to me. ha! But she was informative, professional and did a great job (as far as I know…lol). It’s disconcerting to see doctors younger than my kids, but so is my hairdresser. I guess it’s another sign of aging. At least they’re up on the latest. I like them. 🙂

    1. Excellent point! There’s a lot to be said for experience but things change do fast, being up on the latest is more important.

  26. Having been a military wife for 24 years before my husband retired, I learned a few things to do at least for the hairdresser. I would stop women whose hairstyle I liked and ask them who did their hair . I paid particular attention to those whose hair seem similar to mine or wore their hair in styles similar to mine. I have found some awesome hairdressers that way.

    Doctors were a different story. I went to a military hospital or clinic and saw the doctor assigned to me. The last twenty years since my husband retired I’ve been to four different doctors. I asked people for recommendations. Now that I am on Medicare I just had to find a doctor that was taking patients and had good reviews. I waited four months to get my first appointment, but since then have been able to get right in to see her. I saw the previous doctor for 15 years, but his office kept moving farther and farther from me. He also seemed to have become complacent so when I went on Medicare I decided it was time for a new doctor.

    Finding a church and a good grocery store were the other two problems I encountered in multiple moves. Oh, I guess I should also add a new job each time. But credit unions were usually on the hunt for a good loan officer so not usually a problem.

    1. I bet you did a lot of moving! Great idea about asking people with our hair type. Complacent doctors are worthless and need to be replaced immediately. Good for you!

  27. My hairdresser (hair like yours), nail salon (fine nails too so I’ve worn acrylics for years), good doctor (mine retired two years ago and I’m building trust with a new one) and a network at work that is my best referral source when I need suggestions on any product or service!

      1. When we moved from CA to the Northwest, all my friends were very concerned who I would find to cut and color my hair. That was also MY major concern. I wasn’t concerned about finding doctors, but stayed awake night about finding a good hairdresser. It all worked out great and we were there 25 years.
        Now we’re back in CA and I’m having the same problem, but because I’m older, good doctors have now become a priority. You made me laugh out loud at the description of your hair. Mine is exactly the same.

      2. So funny Cindy and a perfect example of how our priorities change!

  28. Oh Jennifer, I hear you! We’ve moved eight times during our 42 year marriage and I’ve always said the hardest thing to find is a new hairdresser. The worst will be to get those people lined up then decide you need to be somewhere else. Good luck!

    1. You nailed all three , Jennifer! We moved 7 hours away from my mechanic, longtime doctor and hairdresser. MY hubby until ladt month was going for haircuts from Joe, the barber who has cut his hair and beard for 24 years. My former mechanic is so honest and only does repairs when needed so he is gold. For big jobs, I entrust my 19 year old car to him. I changed hairdressers almist as soon as I git here and Jenn knows how my curly grays like to be treated. Hope you are settling in to your new community.Moving after 31 years from suburban to rural has been a challenge for me. I really thought I was more flexible.

      As an aside we are travelling to Ireland for 10 days in early September. Any tips for packing and other advice that could be useful to others.

      1. Lucky you! I adore Ireland. Layers and be prepared for rain. Sensible shoes and limit yourself to 2 colors so you can mix and match.

      2. Good answer Jennifer. I was born and raised in N. Ireland and have been in Vancouver,B.C. for years now. I am returning to Ireland on Monday for a trip, and memories. Yes indeed layer your clothes, limit colors, have an umbrella on hand and definitely comfortable shoes. But most of all enjoy the people, they are wonderful, the amazing scenery, the but beautiful accents and just have fun. Three things I can’t live without, Doctor, dentist, eye specialist.

    2. That will be the worse which is why I’m dragging my feet about doing it. I don’t feel committed to this place. That’s a lot of moving. You’re a trouper

  29. Sandy Doty says:

    We have moved 25 times since we were married 52+ years ago and are contemplating at least one more. You are so right about these people and dentists, eye doctors, vets (if you have fur babies as I know you do) and babysitters if you have that need. Finding these people is a little easier now with social media than it was many years ago when we were moving.

    We have been in our current location 11 years and am still not 100% happy with all of our choices. The only one of the ones mentioned that we are still seeing after all that time is our mechanic. In fact, I’m trying a new hairdresser today.

    Have you tried the “Nextdoor” app? It can be very helpful finding some suggestions. Good luck and look forward to hearing your decision about the Active Retirement Community as that is one of our current considerations for our next move.

    1. I haven’t tried the app but it’s a great idea! Thanks for the suggestion. We moved here for many reasons but seeing if we liked this lifestyle was part of it. My husband and I have different experiences so that comes into play too

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